What Cleans Concrete the Best

Concrete floors are our go-to flooring option for driveways, patios, and basement floors due to their durability, low maintenance, and cost-effectiveness.

However, they aren’t immune to accumulating dirt and stains over time. Understanding effective methods for cleaning concrete without using a pressure washer is crucial for maintaining its appearance and safety, necessitating at least bi-annual cleaning sessions.

A dirty and stained floor looks bad and may get slippery or greasy. If your concrete flooring is in bad shape because of some tough stain, it may feel overwhelming to clean it up but delay no more.

Here is a list of some products showing you how to clean concrete.

Things that Clean Concrete the Best

a man sweeping

1. Use Soap and Water

You can either use dish soap or detergent to clean your cemented floor. This is the most basic way to do it; it will help you easily clean the oily and grimy stains. Just mix two spoons of soap in a bucket of warm water and apply it thoroughly with a mop, scrub it with a scrubber, let it set for a while, and then scrub some more before washing it away.

2. Use Vinegar Mixture

Some stains, like rust spots or pet stains, are tough and won’t go with soap water; for them, use vinegar. Dilute white vinegar in the same quantity of water and pour it over stubborn stains. Let this solution set for at least an hour, and the stain will react with the vinegar and dissolve. Later, scrub the treated area with a soft bristle brush. If some stains persist, try undiluted vinegar to scrub them off.

3. Use Oxygen Bleach

Oxygen bleach is another way to clean up your cement driveway. But before we dive into how to use it, please note that you should always wear rubber gloves while working with bleach, as it can irritate or harm your skin. Just pour the bleach solution all over the floor and use a push broom to scrub it. Let it sit for 20 minutes before washing it away with water.

4. Use Hydrogen Peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide is an oxidizer and a bleaching agent which is popularly used in home cleaning. It is easily available in pharmacies and home improvement stores. You can make a paste of flour and hydrogen peroxide to treat tough stains on concrete and then spread it evenly over the patch. It would be best if you let it sit overnight after scrubbing and then wash it off the next day to get the best results.

5. Use Power Washer

Power washing is a very effective technique to clean concrete floors. But it is important to do it right because it can also damage your flooring. Do a test first if you are not sure about how much pressure the floor will be able to handle. The power washing machines are easily available for rent at home improvement stores. You can fill the washer with a DIY cleaning solution to make it even more effective.

6. Use Muriatic Acid for Stains that Won’t Go Away

If nothing else works, this may do the trick. But you must be careful around this acid as it is very strong and may harm your skin or eyes. Mix one part of this in three parts of water to make a solution and pour it over the stain. Do not let it rest for more than ten minutes, and wash it with water before it starts drying. Consider using this only when necessary and as your last resort.

Which Solution Works on What Type of Stain?

a woman cleaning the stair stains

1. Grease and Oil Stains

If your floor is spilled with oil or grease, sprinkle some baking soda, cornmeal, or sawdust on it to absorb as much oil as possible and then brush it away after some hours. If the stain is still there, scrub it with water and detergent. If the stains are old, these may not work that effectively; try a degreaser to treat them.

2. Water Stains, Mold, or Mildew

Cleaning your basement concrete floor with mold or mildew needs a different type of treatment. The worst thing to do in such a case is to try to sweep it away because it may spread mold spores all over to worsen it. The best thing to do is spray the affected area with mold-killing solution and water. You can also use bleach and water, but it can cause discoloration

3. Tough Stains

Some stains are tough and are not easy to remove, like paint stains. So, if you are considering calling in an expert to scrape it off your concrete flooring, try Trisodium phosphate (TSP). This product should be used cautiously and is even banned in some states, so check the guidelines before buying or using it. Or even better, ask if your local cleaning depot has an environment-friendly alternative to TSP.

Things to Keep in Mind

  • Ensure you sweep and clean up dirt before starting the process, and keep the solutions and equipment required handy.
  • Always let the solution sit on the stain according to the prescribed time to let it work effectively.
  • Power washing should be the last step in your cleaning process as it will help to remove the residuals.
  • Always wear gloves and goggles while working with hard chemicals or acids, as it may harm your skin and eyes.


These things will help to restore your concrete floor to its pristine state. But if you are not into DIY, there are a lot of brands that sell ready-to-use concrete cleaning solutions, too.

If nothing works for you, calling cleaning expert services can be your last resort.

Cleaning Concrete flooring is the job we keep delaying until it gets problematic, but if you keep cleaning it regularly, the task will never feel overwhelming.

Maya Singh

Maya Singh earned her Master’s in Public Health from Columbia University and has spent 15 years in the field of cleaning and hygiene, with a focus on health and environmental safety. Joining our editorial team in 2021, Maya provides insights into effective and sustainable cleaning practices. Her background includes working in public health campaigns and as a consultant for cleaning product companies. In her leisure time, Maya is an avid birdwatcher and participates in community clean-up drives.

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